People and Community
Hammerfest in brief
Hammerfest is a 2692 km² municipality on the western coast of Finnmark. In 2020 the Kvalsund and Hammerfest municipalities merged to form the current Hammerfest municipality. It largely consists of pristine and rugged landscapes. It consist of the island of Kvaløya and parts of Seiland island and Sørøya island, as well as a big area on the mainland. The municipality has about 11500 inhabitants (2020), many live in the city (also called Hammerfest) which is the administrative center. The former Kvalsund municipality area are struggling with depopulation and were well below 1000 inhabitants just prior to the merge with Hammerfest. The Nussir project aims to turn this trend to strengthen local opportunities and the local settlements.
In recent years the large liquified natural gas site on melkøya has brought economic boom and optimism to Hammerfest, as opposed to the general economic downward trend in most other municipalities in Troms & Finnmark. Businesses in Hammerfest are characterized by small businesses of various trades. Primary industries have recently become less important for employment. Tourism, transport, aquaculture, construction and service industries have become more prominent industries. The municipality has good opportunities for adventures at sea and fjords, lakes and rivers, valleys, mountains and plateaus. Several major projects are being planned, among these are Nussir’s copper mine with adjacent planned industrial park at Markoppnes, wind power and a new regional airport.
For those who choose to settle in Hammerfest, they will find that it is an excellent place for those who want to get close to nature, and is a good starting point for trips to Stabbursdalen and Seiland National Parks. There are several rivers in Kvalsund, and one of Norway’s best salmon rivers, Repparfjordelva, runs through the municipality. The village Skaidi is a hub for salmon fishermen, outdoor enthusiasts and cabins. In winter you can enjoy skiing, icefishing and snowmobile excursions.
Nussir takes its role in the community seriously. We believe that the only way we could achieve real success and impart real benefits is to make sure that there is a significant involvement of the community every step of the way.
Our vision of encouraging local involvement is possible in several ways:
- Running the company outside of “Oslo” and from where it is actually based;
- Implementing a feedback system that fosters understanding and good communication between the company and the host community;
- Hiring qualified members of the community and giving them key roles in the operation;
- Veering away from the conventional method of running the company strictly from the top; and
- Seeking continuously the techniques, resources and technology that would minimize the environmental impacts of our processes throughout its life cycle.
In short, we want the community to be appropriately engaged with our company as much as Nussir wants to be responsibly involved in their community. This two-way participation would strengthen the corporate-community partnership that would ultimately result to economic growth balanced with environmental sustainability.
Fish and the fjord
The Repparfjord is situated right beside the Ulveryggen and Nussir copper deposits. The national salmon Repparfjord-river exits into the inner part of the Repparfjord which also has a status as a national salmon river.
Nussir wants the fjord to stay that way and wants to minimize its impact to the fjord by:
- Hiring independent and professional researchers
- Using the best technology available for surveillance
- Having an open and honest dialogue with all interest groups
From Hedmark county in the south to Finnmark in the north, 40% of Norway is allocated for reindeer grazing areas. These areas are divided into about 80 reindeer grazing districts.
96% of the Kvalsund municipality area consists of 4 reindeer grazing districts, District 22 constitutes half of the area in the municipality with its 992 km². Nussir ASA will operate Nussir and Ulveryggen mines within District 22 and in the proximity to the reindeer migration route of District 20.
Nussir is operated from a 0.2 km² existing municipal industrial area that will not affect reindeer husbandry. The industrial area is currently in use for aggregate production.
The operation from the underground mine at Ulveryggen leads to transport along 450 metres of existing regulated road to the plant. This road lies in the migration route of District 20.
The operating license has taken into account the requirements of reindeer herding with a halt of activity on the Ulveryggen during the calving period and a number of other limitations in the grazing and migration period.
The specific mitigating terms given in the operating licence concerning the reindeer herding are:
- There shall be no operation or other activity related to the Ulveryggen ore during the period May 1 to June 15. This means that there should be no activity on the road from the industrial area at Øyen and up to the mine at Ulveryggen, or between mine at Ulveryggen and the rock silo openings.
- In the period April 15 to April 30 and the period June 16 to October 1 there shall be lower activity in the same area as stated in the above condition. The purpose is to influence the reindeer herders’ use of the area as little as possible during the mining operation. Plan for reduced activity level during this period, and which measures are to be implemented to take into account the reindeer husbandry, shall be stated in the operational plan approved at any time.
- When mining at Ulveryggen and in the area up to the discharge site at the rock silos, no constructions should be erected or storage equipment placed and the like that are hindering the reindeer herding.
- Establishment, maintenance and demolition of air shafts shall take place during periods where there is no reindeer herding activity in the area. Driving the shafts must take place from below and noise-damping fans must be installed.
- The waste rock deposit at the mine opening to Ulveryggen must be flattened and made accessible to the reindeer.